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06/20/2012 - 6:57am
Mashup: Rays reliever ejected for pine tar

Rays pitcher Joel Peralta was ejected from Tuesday night's 5-4 victory over the Nationals after umpires found "a significant amount of pine tar" on his glove when he entered the game in the eighth inning. Peralta, who pitched for the Nationals in 2010, appears to have been exposed by a former teammate, as Washington manager Davey Johnson requested the inspection after "a rumor that he liked a little pine tar."

Peralta tipped his cap to the Nationals dugout as he left the field.

"Good for them," he said later. "They still lose the game."

Rays manager Joe Maddon insisted that it's a "common practice" for pitchers to use pine tar, and he called Johnson's actions "cowardly." Maddon also requested a check of Nationals reliever Ryan Mattheus' glove in the ninth inning (umpires found nothing).

"Insider trading, man. It's bush," Maddon said. "It's bogus. That's way too...

06/19/2012 - 9:34pm
Valentine: Pedroia 'more fearful than injured'

Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine said that second baseman Dustin Pedroia was removed from Tuesday night's game against the Marlins after suffering what he initially feared to be a recurrence of the torn adductor muscle in his right thumb that sidelined him for a week. Pedroia was jammed by a 95 mph fastball from right-hander Ryan Webb, and while leaving the field after fouling out to first base, he shook his hand on the way to the dugout.

Valentine -- who said that general manager Ben Cherington talked to the second baseman during the game -- suggested that the Sox had not yet made a conclusive determination about the injury to the three-time All-Star, who went 1-for-3 with a sacrifice bunt.

"It’s early for a complete update, of course. He said -- this is third-hand -- that he was more fearful than he was injured," Valentine said. "The ball was an inside pitch that pushed the bat back in his hand the way he didn’t want it...

06/19/2012 - 9:04pm
Reeling them in: Sox win third straight

David Ortiz, Kelly Shoppach and Cody Ross all homered off Mark Buehrle in support of Clay Buchholz as the Red Sox beat the Marlins, 7-5, Tuesday night in the opener of a nine-game homestand at Fenway. The Sox won their third straight to move over .500 again at 34-33. The Red Sox overcame some shoddy fielding and an inconsistent night from Buchholz to improve to 15-19 this year at Fenway. 

Buchholz was staked to leads of 4-2 and 5-3 but could not hold them as Logan Morrison had a career night for the Marlins. He had hits in his first three at-bats, including a towering homer off Buchholz in the first inning that put the Marlins on top 2-0. Buchholz allowed nine hits and five runs in six innings, striking out three and walking one while improving to a team-best 8-2 on the season. Buchholz actually saw his ERA increase from 5.38 to 5.53 on the season.

Ortiz got the runs right back in the bottom half of the inning with his 17th homer of the season...

06/19/2012 - 8:41pm
Pedroia exits game due to injury

Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia left Tuesday's game against the Marlins after the bottom of the seventh inning, shortly after getting jammed by a fastball on a foul-out to first base. After a bat-splintering, 95 mph fastball from reliever Ryan Webb, Pedroia was seen shaking his hand on the way back to the Red Sox dugout.

The fact that Pedroia was left shaking his hand raises obvious questions about whether the issue is related to his recent stint on the sidelines due to a torn adductor muscle in his right thumb. Pedroia managed to avoid the disabled list but was sidelined for a week by that injury, which became acute in late-May. He has played in all 13 Red Sox games since returning from the injury, and with Tuesday's 1-for-3 performance (which also featured a sacrifice bunt), Pedroia was hitting .170 with a .237 OBP, .226 slugging mark and .463 OPS this month.

He was replaced at second base by Nick Punto. More updates will be provided...

06/19/2012 - 4:45pm
Bobby V: Olney doesn't know 'anything'

Before Tuesday's series opener with the Marlins at Fenway, Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine joined his players in vehemently denying a report this week that the atmosphere inside clubhouse is "toxic." Olney reported that players and team staff are frustrated with the way the team is being handled inside the clubhouse, leading to a potentially explosive atmosphere.

"I don't know to define toxic," Valentine said Tuesday afternoon in his first public comments since Olney's blog that ripped the Red Sox culture. "It's too big a word for me. "I'm not going to comment on people's articles. I don't even comment on [Boston media] articles. Why would I comment on somebody who I don't think knows anything."

After about seven minutes of answering questions, the subject of the Red Sox clubhouse came up again. 

"It's a bunch of guys who get dressed and play loud music before the game and seem to get ready. I don...

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